USA wins a place in Sydney October 2017
Day 3 - Sunday April 30th at International Polo Club.
The XI Federation of International Polo (FIP) World Polo Championship Zone “A” Playoffs culminated in a captivating final between Mexico and the United States. The closing match of the tournament took place on the renowned Engel and Völkers Field 1 of the International Polo Club (IPC).
USA captured the lead straight out of the first lineup with three field goals. Under the direction of coach Joel Baker, USA showcased classic open-style polo, capitalizing on one-shot precision passes but a resilient Mexico team would bounce back in the third chukker, shutting down the USA defense and scoring four unanswered goals to take the lead for the first time 6-5 at the half.
An unwavering USA team did not lose confidence, as Viana converted a penalty 3 open goal, followed by an equalizing goal from Radcliff, moving into the fifth chukker 7-all setting the stage for an electrifying final chukker as the teams battled for a position in the XI FIP World Polo Championship.
Both the USA and Mexico suffered penalties in the first three minutes of the fifth, but neither could translate them into goals. After USA scored a field goal, a nearside backshot miss by Mexico, allowed USA’s Viana time to score the final goal, sealing the win for USA 9-7.
Most Valuable Player was awarded to Felipe Viana for exceptional play, the game high scorer with five goals on the day. Best Playing Pony was presented to nine-year-old Chili played by Mexico, owned by Del Walton and bred by Gabriel Crespo in Aiken, South Carolina.
USA: Remy Du Celliee Muller 3, Geronimo Obregon 4, Felipe Viana 5, Robert Herndon Radcliff 2. Total 14 handicap goals.
Mexico: Juan José de Alba 4, Alejandro Gonzalez 3, Mariano Gracida 4, Diego Velarde 3. Total 14 handicap goals.
Guatemala (3 1/2): Jose Ignacio Beltranena 2, Sebastian Aycinena 2, José Miguel Aguilar 3 , Fernando Beltranena 3. Total 10 handicap goals.